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Postgraduate Opportunities

29 Feb 2024

The structure of a PhD

A PhD is usually between 3 and 4 years, with 3.5 years being the most common. A normal pattern of PhD research would be:

  • Year 1: University of London postgraduate courses, October-January, in conjunction with RHUL, Brunel and QMUL. Beginning research on an experiment in parallel, including attending collaboration meetings if applicable. Written first year report to be handed in at the beginning of September, with an oral presentation and mini-viva at the end of September. National Particle Physics Summer School in September at the end of your first year.
  • Year 2: Research on thesis topic. For experimental students, whose experiment is abroad: you usually have the option to spend up to a year at the experiment. Usually attend an international summer school.
  • Years 3/4: Research on thesis topic, write up and hand in thesis. In the spring of the third year the student presents their thesis work at the Annual Institute of Physics High Energy Particle Physics Group meeting. Also typically attend one other international conference.

This is only a rough guide - details vary depending upon the project, student and supervisor. There is usually the option of contributing to teaching at UCL. The UCL Graduate School also provides more general training courses.

Please see here for some profiles of past students.